In the dull minds of tickbox marketing people (who will not be reading this blog) the advantage of Thought Leadership is the same as the advantage of Media Relations – ‘free advertising’. What could be more simple? You sit your product marketing team, Chief Marketing Officer or, super worst case, your leadership team in a room, tell them to come up with some smack and sizzle, then add their favoured stimulants; caffeine, bourbon and if necessary (and where legal) marijauana and wait….
Wrong. For at least three reasons
- Thought Leadership is never the democratically elected decision of a committee
- It’s YOUR job. Thought Leadership pretty much IS Marketing – love it, sell it hard or no one will buy it .
- As Picasso almost said “Good marketing folks borrow, great ones steal” (you’re welcome, now read on…)
So, is it time to give up on Thought Leadership in B2B? Nah. course not. The key is to make sure it’s Thought LEADERSHIP, as opposed to a thought.
Here are five indications you may be on the right lines
- It is going to p*** someone off.
- You had help. Seriously. Why not risk a little outside counsel as a catalyst?
- There are provable short-term consequences to disregarding this Point of View.
- It creates a new category or points to a new issue.
- Someone wants to rip it off as soon as you express it (see above).
If you find this sort of debate stimulating, you might want to know this is one of five such ‘Why XXX sucks’ posts in a series which Positive Marketing has created to stir the pot and show why integrating PR, Social and Thought Leadership is the best. A little leadership can go a long way.